We Are Social’s Monday Mashup


This week we’re kicking off what we plan to make a semi-regular feature for your Monday afternoons on the We Are Social blog. A quick round up of research, news and case studies that caught our eye over the last week and we thought were worth sharing.

Social Media: The Next Great Gateway for Content Discovery?
New research released from Nielsen suggests that social media is starting to become the primary vehicle for content discovery:

We continue to see that social media has not only changed the way consumers communicate and gather on the Web, but also impacted content discovery and navigation in a big way. But how? …In a nutshell, there is a segment of the online population that uses social media as a core navigation and information discovery tool — roughly 18 percent of users see it as core to finding new information. While still a smaller percentage than those who use search engines or portals like Yahoo! or MSN, it is a significant figure.

Nielsen - content_start - blog

Socializers’ (i.e. those who spend 10 percent or more of their online time on social media) cite too much information on the web as one of the main reasons why they turn social media in order to hunt for information.

The study found that these socializers actually use social media as a filtration tool, trusting recommendations and content from their friends and family to wade through the sheer volume of information out there.

Marta Strickland asks some interesting questions about the research which are well worth reading.

How should Neal’s Yard Remedies have responded to comments?
PR Week revisited the Neil’s Yard debacle from May, where an explosion of critical comments for the company on the Guardian’s ‘You Ask They Answer’ series were left unanswered when critics began to grill the company on its homeopathic remedy, and not ‘organic skincare’ as they believed.

Is it realistic to expect to be able to put boundaries around online discussion? Should Neal’s Yard have never taken part in the first place?

As Facebook Ages, Gen Y Turns to Twitter
Recent findings from the latest report from the Pew Internet and Internet Life Project demonstrated that the median age of users across several social networks has been changing over the last year:

Today, Twitter is now the second-youngest of the top four social networking sites. Its median age is 31. MySpace’s is 26, LinkedIn is 39, and… Facebook is 33.

Despite past reports to the contrary, Generation Y now also appears to be moving to Twitter in great number. In fact they’ve more than double their numbers: “37% of those 18-24 now use Twitter when only 19% did back in December 2008.”

PEW - youth on twitter chart

Twitter – Retweet Limited Rollout
Last week, Twitter announced that they have activated the retweet button on a small number of accounts. Though its long been possible to retweet posts using third party applications such as Tweetdeck, it hasn’t been possible to forward particularly interesting tweets to your followers through the web interface. According to Twitter:

The plan is to see how it goes first with this small release. If it needs more work, then we’ll know right away. If things look good, we’ll proceed with releasing the feature in stages eventually arriving at 100%.

This move is another step by Twitter, who a just over a weeks ago released their ‘Lists’ feature, to improving the web interface in order to make things easier and more efficient for users.

FEED: The 2009 Razorfish Digital Brand Experience Report
Razorfish published their Digital Brand Experience Report today, which surveyed 1,000 ‘connected consumers’ about how the web affected the way they engage with brands and make buying decisions. As you might expect, the research revealed that digital technology is indeed altering consumer attitudes. Some key findings:

The full PDF is available for download, along with a pack of charts.